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Craig Kerstiens

Conversation aggregators vs. social network aggegators

I recently posted about web 2.5, and since that time have been diving into two sites that attempt to do this. The first is friendfeed, I’ve commented about it before. It’s overall a great site, however the community is still growing on it, and most of my personal friends are not on there, only those that I follow and interact with in a tech or professional community. And there’s the ability to go through and create an imaginary personality for friends, but for me that could take days, and while its still tempting I can’t quite commit that strongly. Yeah friend feed is great, but I find myself using it more for having a conversation with whoever is there, rather than using it to follow individual people.

With the emergence of rooms in friendfeed it seems they realize its more about being able to have a conversation around a similar topic than it is to track individual people.

However it seems that socialthing, which I recently got access to, thanks socialthing team, is a slightly better aggregator at least for my demographic. Friendfeed works well for those that use blogs, google reader, photo albums and the like. But friendfeed is seriously lacking on the facebook front, meanwhile socialthing is accomplishing this very well. While I’m not sure which one I’ll be engaged more in, in the coming weeks though I imagine it will depend on the purpose.

Friendfeed works for following information about tech, news, or similar broad topics. Socialthing works for keeping up with friends, when they’ve uploaded pictures from last friday night, or when that girl you have a crush on in high school breaks up with a long-term boyfriend and needs a rebound, and the like. I’m not sure how friendfeed would work if they did just enable the same time of features for facebook, I imagine it might not catch as right now its about conversations more than it is a singular feed. Socialthing has a chance to win this one, but you really need to have more than 10 services you connect to.